Are Your Goals SMART?
has shown that the most successful people are those who regularly set
goals. Most people would not start out on a trip without some kind of a
map or GPS navigational system on board, yet many people run their
businesses with very little directional assistance. This can cause a lot
of wasted time and energy, sometimes going in circles or going in a
direction that becomes a dead end. You'll end up somewhere, but will it
be where you want to end up?
When creating your goals, you should follow a standard format called SMART goals. The SMART format identifies five criteria that are needed to ensure a goal is truly effective.
Specific: Specificity is important in writing goals. That's because specific goals create focus and clarity - they have a laser-like quality. They articulate exactly what needs to happen in order to achieve the results you want. Instead of writing a vague goal, such as... "Offer more products to customers." ...make the goal specific... "Increase the number of available products from 7 to 10."
- How easy or challenging is it?
- Do I have the necessary resources to accomplish the goal?
Time-Oriented: Although the "T" of SMART appears at the end of the acronym, the time-orientation of your goal is just as important to consider. Time-oriented goals answer the questions, How often? or By when? For example:
- How often: Deliver at least 75% of employee reviews on a quarterly basis.
- By when: Deliver all employee reviews by June 30.